From the get-go today, I felt like I was trying to catch up.

Well, I suppose I always am. My kids are frequently squabbling and tugging at me, and I can’t help but stay up late at night to do anything other than “mommin” work, which means I have the hardest time getting up and going in the morning. 

So, breakfast was late.

Schoolwork was late.

Spilled milk soaked a chair cushion. And you bet I cried over it.  

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And I couldn’t finish the laundry, which is the one thing I thought I could surely check off my list.

Then lunchtime came around, and it summed up exactly how I’m feeling today—like burnt toast. 

We didn’t get groceries yet, so the menu was soup and cheese bread, which got overcooked and burnt stiff.

And I saw such a clear picture of a mother’s workload. 

Moms can have the best intentions and all the love in our hearts and still get blindsided and overwhelmed and burnt out. 

We’re fighting so hard to protect and provide and nourish and support and teach and serve and plan and schedule and cheer up and discipline and negotiate and referee and chauffeur and entertain and pick up and do all the mom thingsand all these things definitely take their toll physically and mentally. 

It’s pretty much impossible to do all we feel like we need to do without running behind or dropping the ball or burning the toast.

But here’s the thing I realized today . . . even though it had been a day, I am a mom.

And moms learn to peel back the cheese and salvage the meal. And feed the babes. And keep on.

We just need a minute. And someone to acknowledge all this mothering work is important, beautiful, chaotic work. We need prayers for mercy and friends who get it, and we need loads of grace to cover the mess-ups and meltdowns and moods. 

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Because we’re doing a whole heck of a lot, friends. And even though our children are our greatest joy, we are going to get burnt out. 

But then we’ll get back up and move on to the next thing and keep on. 

Because we love our kiddos with all our hearts. And that’s just what moms do. 

Jaclyn Warren

Stay-at-home mommy of four on mission to encourage parents to savor the meaningful in the midst of the messy. Take your 15 minutes; it’s your turn for timeout. You can find her at or on Facebook at